WATCH ABOVE: Reid Fiest reports on the thousands of mourners who gathered to honour the memory of late RCMP Const. David Wynn.
EDMONTON – St. Albert RCMP Const. David Wynn was remembered as a man “with an extraordinary capacity to make the world a better place” at a regimental funeral Monday.
“There’s been a lot of talk about David, about the man he was,” said his sister Mona Wynn. “I’m here to tell you it’s all true.”
“David would want us to forgive. He was a peaceful man,” she shared, adding that he wouldn’t know the first thing about holding a grudge.
“He knew there were much better things to hold onto. So he did.”
“Dave was an ordinary man with an extraordinary capacity to make the world a better place,” said Mona.
Officials expected as many as 7,000 people to attend Wynn’s funeral Monday afternoon.
“From the moment I met Dave, I could tell he was kind, generous and – more than anything – proud of his family,” said Tiffiny Manetta, a cousin of Shelly MacInnis-Wynn.
“It was easy to be proud of Dave.”
Kevin Davison, who worked as a paramedic with Const. Wynn, performed the song ‘When the Sirens are Gone.’ The Rankin Family also performed and Paul Brandt sang an acoustic version of ‘Amazing Grace.’
The Chaplain spoke about Dave’s love of fly fishing with Shelly and the boys, sharing a cup of tea with a friend or family member, serious dedication to his work, his sense of humour and his generous kindness. Mona shared that Wynn was also an organ and tissue donor and the family finds comfort in the fact that his passing will help more than 30 other people.
RCMP Deputy Commissioner Marianne Ryan spoke to Shelly during her address at the service.
“The tremendous strength and unfaltering courage you have shown… will stay with me always,” she said.
“Thank you for sharing Dave with our RCMP family.”
To close the funeral, the Grade 6 class that Wynn taught the DARE program to sang ‘We Can Make a Difference.’
Prior to the service, thousands of mourners lined the streets for a uniformed procession that left Holy Family Church at 12 noon MT (2 p.m. ET). A sea of red and blue could be seen from above as RCMP members and fellow officers made their way to Servus Place, where the funeral began at 2 p.m. MT (4 p.m. ET).
WATCH: The community of St. Albert continues to come together to support the Wynn family. Lisa Wolansky explains.
Law enforcement members from across North America took part in the procession.
The funeral was broadcast live at 2 p.m. both on Global Edmonton and on Shaw TV. The procession and funeral were livestreamed online. Gord Steinke, Nancy Carlson and Shaye Ganam anchored the special coverage. The RCMP regimental funeral will air again on Shaw TV Monday at 6:30 p.m. MT.
WATCH: The funeral procession for Const. Wynn, as captured from the Global 1 helicopter.
The procession was a chance for the public to pay its respects, as seating inside the recreation centre will be very limited.
Many dignitaries were in attendance, including Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Alberta Premier Jim Prentice, St. Albert Mayor Nolan Crouse and Insp. Kevin Murray, Deputy Commissioner Marianne Ryan, and Commissioner Bob Paulson with the RCMP.
WATCH: Yellowhead MP Jim Eglinski reads an emotional statement to honour the life and service of St. Albert RCMP officer Const. David Wynn.
A live feed of the funeral was shown at St. Albert’s Arden Theatre.
Other alternate viewing locations:
RCMP Staff Sgt. Major Doug Pack told a news briefing Saturday that officers from many different police forces are expected to take part in the procession.
Pack said it would likely include everyone from border guards, firefighters, wildlife and conservation officers, to municipal and provincial police from other provinces, and even officers from the United States.
A public visitation for Const. Wynn was held Sunday evening. Family, friends and emergency personnel were given the chance to pay their respects to Wynn earlier in the day. Wynn leaves behind a wife and three sons. They were at the visitation Sunday to spend time with their family and meet with law enforcement members who stopped by.
“They want to be able to speak to the people that meant something to Constable Wynn and to have some conversation with them,” RCMP Sgt. Josee Valiquette said of Wynn’s family.
Inside the church, a Canadian flag was draped over Wynn’s casket while the song ‘Blackbird’ played. A slideshow also played in the background.
WATCH: Family, friends and the public are being given the chance to pay their respect to Const. David Wynn. Jessica Kent has more from the visitation being held at St. Albert Alliance Church.
Wynn was shot in the head while investigating a vehicle theft in the community just outside Edmonton on Saturday, January 17. Police said it was a routine licence plate check that led to 42-year-old Wynn being critically injured in a confrontation at the Apex Casino in St. Albert.
Wynn and Auxiliary Const. Derek Bond, 49, had just identified a truck with licence plates that didn’t match registration, when 34-year-old Shawn Maxwell Rehn fired at the officers at close range. Wynn was shot in the head; Bond was hit in the arm and torso. Rehn’s body was later found at a nearby residence, dead of an apparent suicide.
Wynn never regained consciousness. His family made the decision to take him off life support last Monday. In a gut-wrenching news conference that night, his wife said the family was “saying their goodbyes.” Wynn died in hospital on Wednesday morning.
The Spouses of the RCMP, a Facebook group for wives of Mounties, have launched an online campaign encouraging Canadians to wear red on Monday to pay tribute to both Const. Wynn and all other officers who have died in the line of duty.
“Please share this event and invite all your friends. It would be wonderful if the sea of red RCMP serges weren’t alone on Monday, stand with them,” said the campaign’s Facebook page.
For more information on how the public can show its support, visit the City of St. Albert’s website.
*Editor’s note: This story was originally published on Friday, Jan. 23, 2015. It was updated Monday, January 26 with more details about the funeral.